Wednesday, 12 August 2015

Nintendo Wii U - My Favourite Current Gen Console & Why You Should Buy One


Nintendo - Still working their magic after 30 years!

This year I have owned and played on all three of the current generation of consoles - Sony's PS4, Microsoft's Xbox One and Nintendo's Wii U. Now, I will be the first to admit that 'modern' games have not be doing it for me for several years now. While, naturally, I still enjoy the smaller indie titles that appear on Steam and other machines (especially the PlayStation Vita), the main 'triple A' titles have left me cold. I have sat down and dedicated time to games such as GTA V, Assassins Creed : Black Flag, Far Cry 4, Drive Club, Forza Horizons 2 and Batman Arkham City, but all of them have felt uninspired, bland and, more importantly, not much fun to play. So, I have generally stuck to a mix of indie games, classic arcade games on MAME, and retro titles on platforms such as the Sega Saturn, SNES, N64, or whatever random console I have purchased that week.

Monday, 10 August 2015

Review - Eternum (PC)


Eternum

Hot on the heels of my review of the excellent 80's arcade game, Baluba-Louk No Densetsu, comes a follow up review. This time I take a look at a brand new indie game that takes a great deal of inspiration from Able Corp's wonderful platformer, as well as a huge nod to Capcom's Ghosts 'N Goblins series. This inspiration is immediately apparent, in fact, the developer has referred to the game as an unofficial sequel to the Ghosts 'N Goblins games, with the hero being no other than Arthur the knight himself. Now an old man, Arthur is on a purely selfish quest. Instead of rescuing his beloved, he is now on the hunt for magical orbs that grant the owner eternal youth. I am not sure why Arthur is alone - clearly his damsel in distress wasn't as into the relationship as he was and has done a runner in the interim. You have to feel sorry for the guy, especially considering how brutally hard the challenges he faced to rescue her were.

Tuesday, 4 August 2015

Retro Review - Baluba-Louk No Densetsu (Arcade)


The original Tomb Raider

Ok, arcade fans! I am here once again to bring you another obscure coin-op gem that deserves your attention. This time it's the turn of the catchily titled Japanese game Baluba-Louk No Densetsu (just rolls off the tongue doesn't it!). Released way back in 1986, Baluba was another colourful 2d platform, collect-em-up, in a very similar vein to the Tehkan classic, Bomb Jack - one of my all time favourite games! Playing as a cute little explorer dude, your aim is to move around the small underground stages grabbing every single treasure chest, while avoiding the brightly-coloured beasties that patrol the stages. 

Sunday, 26 July 2015

Retro Review - Pokemon Snap (Nintendo 64)



Gotta Snap 'Em All

Pokemon.. Ah, Pokemon. Gotta catch 'em all etc. etc. Yep, you guessed it, I am not a fan. As a lifelong loather of all things anime, I found Pokemon about as appealing as a final demand letter from a debt collection agency. But I am clearly in the minority as it's a worldwide phenomenon that shows no signs of going away. Kudos to the creators, though, for finding a way to fleece kids the world over for 20 years now, as they attempt to acquire every one of the ever-expanding bestiary of irritating critters. Anyway, I recently found myself in possession of a Nintendo 64, and in between games of Goldeneye and Wave Race 64, I decided to try out Pokemon Snap (purely to check it worked, honestly). I never thought I would end up inexplicable hooked to the damn thing, playing it for days on end - even starting a new game so I could watch my girlfriend do her own play through.

Monday, 6 July 2015

Review - Letter Quest : Grimm's Journey (PC / Mac)


Casual gaming finally wins me over

I have never once considered myself a casual gamer - I would scoff at the 'noobs' playing gibberish like Farmville and Candy Crush, guffaw at the naivety of so-called gamers who wasted their time playing touch screen nonsense on their mobiles and tablets - titles usually involving nothing more complex than swiping your finger across the screen. But now I may have to reassess my views (well, not entirely, Candy Crush is still an abomination) due to one title, Letter Quest : Grimm's Journey.

Friday, 26 June 2015

Instant Remedy - Insert Disk 2 - Amiga Remix Album Out Now!


Instant Remedy - Insert Disk 2

Great news for fans of high quality remixes of classic videogame soundtracks : Instant Remedy's brand new album, Insert Disk 2 is now available for your listening pleasure! A follow up to his self titled debut album, Insert Disk 2 focuses on remixing classic Amiga game music, rather than those of the Commodore 64. The first album is one of my favourite videogame remix albums due to it's high quality production, thumping beats and and modernised versions of some of my favourite C64 melodies, so I was very excited to hear there would be an Amiga follow-up, and I have not been disappointed. 

Friday, 13 March 2015

New Toejam & Earl game in development! Kickstarter project needs your help!


Bring back the funk!

Whatup Yo? Erm...? Well, I was going to start with an amusing string of 'urban slang' as part of an introduction to this piece, but I suddenly realised how uncool I am and that I would end up sounding like Jessie from Breaking Bad ("Gatorade me, bitch!"). Anyway, gamers from the 16-bit era will know all about Toejam & Earl! Released on the Sega Mega Drive way back in 1991, this funky, exploration game was a breath of fresh air in a world populated by platformers and fighting games. A roguelike at heart, TJ&E tasked you with wandering around the cartoon landscape attempting to find pieces of your broken space ship whilst avoiding a selection of some of the most bizarre enemies ever seen in a videogame - rogue dentists, possessed mailboxes, giant hamster wheels and stampeding nerds to name but a few. Adding to the madness were unopened presents which, when opened, could grant you useful items such as speed-giving super hi-tops, extra health, icarus wings, or money. They could, unfortunately also contain deadly items such as enemies, rain clouds that would follow you, zapping you with lightning, or even instant death. The random nature of these presents, along with the randomised levels and ship piece placement resulted in a game with plenty of replay value. The two player split screen - which allowed both players to wander off and do their own thing - sealed the deal and Toejam & Earl went on to become a cult hit.